Delhi Riots Case: Pinjra Tod Activists Devangana Kalita, Natasha Narwal Granted Bail After One Year Of Arrest

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Delhi High Court on Tuesday granted bail to Pinjra Tod activists Devangana Kalita, and Natasha Narwal, along with Jamia student Asif Iqbal Tanha, who were arrested under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in connection with the Delhi riots case.

The bail is subjected to a personal bond of ₹50,000 and two local sureties of like amount. Conditions for bail include the three surrendering their passports and not indulging in activities that would hamper the case.

Natasha Narwal (R) and Devangana Kalita
Natasha Narwal (R) and Devangana Kalita

Kalita and Narwal, who are research scholars at Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), are also associated with the women’s resistance group Pinjra Tod.

They were arrested in May 2020 in connection with the communal violence that broke out in northeast Delhi in February 2020 during protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA).

They duo was arrested by the Crime Branch of the Delhi Police and were booked under the stringent anti-terror law UAPA for allegedly being part of a premeditated conspiracy behind the communal riots. As per media reports, they were also booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) including rioting, unlawful assembly and attempt to murder.

Also read: Dalit Labour Activist Nodeep Kaur Granted Bail

As per Delhi Police, following the CAA, Kalita and Narwal, along with other accused persons, conspired to cause disruption of such a magnitude at the national capital that would lead to disorderliness and disturbance of law and order at an unprecedented scale.

Charges made by the Delhi Police also alleged that members of Pinjra Tod mobilized women in the northeast area of Delhi and created a 24/7 protest site at Madina Masjid, Seelampur, as part of a pre-planned conspiracy.

In May 2021, Narwal was granted interim bail for three weeks after the demise of her father and a senior member of the Communist Party of India (CPI) (Marxist), Mahavir Narwal.

She soon surrendered herself after performing the last rites of her father and returned to the Tihar Jail, where she had been lodged for over a year.

(Edited by Sanhati Banerjee)

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